prolusion

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Hence, as we proceed towards the end of the prolusion, Day, after hearing so many praises of her virtues and too modest to hear more, proceeds towards the sunset, as Milton describes in an elegiac evocation: "Jam igitur declinat in vesperam dies, & nocti statim cedet.
In its complex, ironic and gracious way, the prolusion explores the apparently artificial question and delivers a victory for day over night whilst entertaining the audience with a vigorous display of oratory, sophistry, mythology, poetic evocation and wit.
Prolusion Two "examines" the concept of the harmony of the spheres.
The spirited Third Prolusion once again traces a movement from darkness to light, here from the darkness of medieval philosophy to the light and truth of humanist learning.
In Prolusion One, the similar movement from darkness/ contention towards enlightenment/peace implies a cosmic opposition between malevolent and benevolent forces.
The genealogical section of Prolusion One is conducted in terms of pagan mythology whose status and validity is questioned.
However, as early as his First Prolusion, Milton had already demonstrated to a sophisticated academic audience that the ends of poetry and rhetoric could be harmonized within an oration.
1) Quotations from the Latin text of Prolusion One with an English translation are taken from the Columbia Edition of The Works of John Milton, 22 vols.